Opponents of plans to build a third runway at Heathrow airport claimed yesterday that the government had based its support for the project on 'seriously flawed' economic analysis. Financial Times

A report published by the Dutch consultants CE Delft cast doubts on the government estimates that expansion would bring economic benefits totalling £5bn.

The report, commissioned by Hacan, the leading lobbying group opposed to further growth of the airport, attacked much of the economic analysis previously conducted by Oxford Economic Forecasting in two reports commissioned by the aviation industry.

The OEF reports have been widely used by the government to demonstrate the wider economic benefits derived from the growth of aviation.